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West Coast Trail

Plains to Alpine Passes to Subtropical Bush to the Beaches!

The West Coast Trail is a walking adventure created for hikers and nature lovers keen to explore a variety of landscapes and terrain.

Incorporating some of the best short, and mid-length day walks in Arthur’s Pass National Park, and on the West Coast of the South Island, your journey of discovery takes you from East to West Coast over 4 days of walking.

The West Coast Trail is achievable for all levels and is recommended for those wishing to explore the region in depth with a series of day walks. Incorporating walks in two National Parks and over a variety of landscapes from rainforest to alpine forest, coastline and river valleys, the West Coast Trail Walk provides an excellent snapshot of the best of South Island scenery.

Add on some cycling! This tour can be combined with the West Coast Wilderness Cycle Trail for a 7 day walk and cycle experience.

Tour Type

Walking Tour


4 days / 3 nights




Book now for Next Season!

Secure your places now for next summer!

  • Friday 17 February 2023-last 2 places
  • Friday 17 March 2023-available

Do you have another date in mind?
We can build a tour especially for your group, please enquire for dates available.

Tour Itinerary

Price: NZ$1895

Day 1

Christchurch to Arthurs Pass

Varied distance walked (max 7km) - 3.5 hours approximately

Comfortable Motel

You depart between 8:00 and 9am from Christchurch and travel along the Great Alpine Highway to Castle Hill where you walk amidst the distinctive limestone rock formations. 

From here you travel to Arthurs Pass where we visit the Department of Conservation Visitor Centre and learn all about the history of this fascinating area before you undertake a local walk around the village where the history of the settlement will be experienced.

After the historical village walk you will then walk to Punchbowl Falls. There are a lot of steps on this walk so please be aware that it can be quite taxing on joints.

After completion of the Punchbowl Walk the rest of the afternoon is free time.

Tonight you dine in Arthurs Pass after which you retire to your comfortable motel in Arthurs Pass.

Day 2

Arthurs Pass to Greymouth

Varied distance walked (max 10km) - 5 hours approximately


After breakfast you will begin your walk along the Bealey Track in Arthur’s Pass where you will be guided up the Bealey River to the base of Mt Rolleston. The group will stop to enjoy the scenery and a picnic lunch together.

The Dobson Nature Walk is the next experience along the trail. You will pass through colourful alpine vegetation, tussock, and wetlands while enjoying the view of mountains and valleys towering in the distance.

You will then explore some of the old goldmining relics on the Goldsborough Track near Kumara. This historic walk takes you through a wonderful array of West Coast ferns, with some of the best remaining examples of hill country rimu and miro. You can try your hand at gold panning.

You are then guided along the Tunnel Loop Walk where you will see an outstanding display of hand dug goldminers’ tunnels.

Tonight, enjoy the best of West Coast hospitality, with a relaxing evening at your Lodge accommodation.

Day 3

Greymouth to Punakaiki

Varied distance (max 10km) - 5 hours approximately

Beachfront Lodge

Your day begins by exploring the ‘Jewel of the West Coast’, the Punakaiki Pancake Rocks and blowholes. You will walk around these spectacular limestone formations that were created over 30 million years ago. The timing of this walk will coincide with high tide so that you can see the huge water spouts that blast from the crevices in the rocks, a truly spectacular and breathtaking sight.

The Truman Track is the next stop on the trail. You will be guided through lush coastal rainforest and capture fantastic views of the coastline.

You will stay in high quality West Coast lodge accommodation amongst the nikau palms, with magnificent coast scenery, and enjoy an entertaining evening meal.

Day 4

Punakaiki to Christchurch

Varied distance (max 11km) - 3 hours approximately

Your adventure continues this morning, after breakfast, with the Pororari River Walk, where you will experience spectacular West Coast native rainforest and broad limestone canyons, while walking alongside the lovely Pororari River. The track passes through dense sub-tropical forest of coastal broadleaf, tree ferns and towering rata.

Your West Coast Trail walking experience ends at mid-day in Greymouth leaving you with a number of additional options:

Return to Christchurch by:

The TranzAlpine Railway – rated ‘one of the top 6 train rides in the world’ and highly recommended by Tuatara Tours. From your carriage you will enjoy stunning views of farmland, gorges, river valleys, lush beech forests and the Southern Alps. (4 hours) (addtional cost)


Tuatara Tours Coach (4 hours)(no additional cost)

Ask our team for details.

If you wish to continue your stay in the West Coast region or explore another area of the South Island there are hire car facilities in nearby Greymouth.

What's included?


Double or twin share. If single room accommodation is requested, an additional fee per person is payable to cover this requirement for the duration of the tour.

  • Night 1:  Motel in Arthurs Pass – ensuite units
  • Night 2:  A beautifully renovated 1902 farmhouse, private rooms with either ensuite or private bathroom facilities. Swimming pool, spa and sauna for guests.
  • Night 3: Modern beachfront hotel. Private rooms with ensuite bathrooms.


You will enjoy great local cuisine; breakfasts and hearty packed lunches during the day,  and either restaurant meals or wholesome home-cooked fare prepared by your host/hostess in the evenings. If you have any dietary issues or food allergies, we are happy to cater for these, please advise the office of details when you make your booking. Alcohol is not included in the tour cost, but is available for purchase most nights.


Tuatara Tours transports all your luggage for the duration of the tour.
All you carry is a small day pack with your personal gear, drink and lunch. We do the rest

Tour Kit Bag – Exclusive to Tuatara Tours

To ensure you get the very best out of your journey with the least of fuss, we provide you with a kit bag full of useful goodies.

This will be given to you at the start of your tour.

An experienced guide

Our guides are very experienced, friendly walkers and bikers who love to share their knowledge of New Zealand’s flora and fauna and local history. They all hold current first aid certificates, passenger driving licences and are the very best people to ensure your experience will be one to remember.

All transport

Access and Concession fees paid to the Department of Conservation

NZ Goods and Service Tax (GST)

Safety and Risk Management

To ensure maximum safety for all, our guides are certified first aiders and fully qualified drivers. Tuatara Tours operate under a Safety and Risk Management Plan which is regularly audited and approved by a qualified and independent auditor.

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